Pepe’s Non-Smoking Party-Time Lounge has moved!

GKY_WeveMoved11-e1276114364847

Pepe’s Non-Smoking Party Lounge has moved to a new host!

 

Click here to read the new Lounge!

Pepe’s Non-Smoking Party Time Lounge.

 

Thanks to everyone who has visited us for the past three years and we look forward to seeing you at the new host.

 

Advertisements
Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

E-cigs banned by New York City. Really? You realize these are e-cigs, not actual cigarettes?

ecigThis is a baffling story to me, sorry. Jack, I know you might not agree, but I have enough of a Libertarian streak to say, “WTF?”

A couple of weeks ago, the city of New York extended its strict smoking ban to e-cigs. E-cigs are not allowed in NYC bars and restaurants now.

OK, I don’t have a big agenda with e-cigs, which I will explain in a detailed post tomorrow (I promise), but this reminds me of  a dumb move made in Montana regarding e-cigs. When the state’s smoking ban went into place, a lot of the bars around here stocked up on e-cigs that they could sell to their customers who could no longer smoke in the bars. The state health department came down and claimed e-cigs were covered under the smoking ban, and the bars cried, “like … why?” And the state health department responded … “um … we don’t know.” It turns out the state health department literally thought e-cigs were somehow literal electronic cigarettes, which they are not. They are simply a nicotine delivery system, nothing more. After declaring e-cigs banned, the state health department backed down a few weeks later and said they were OK (probably after conferring with lawyers).

And there you have it. E-cigs are massively misunderstood … and let me stress, I am not endorsing them. Just saying they are misunderstoood. There is nothing toxic or poisonous or carcinogenic in the steam coming out of an e-cig. Just nicotine. And you’re not going to get addicted to nicotine because you might inhale a bit of nicotine-laced steam from an e-cig. More on this issue tomorrow (I promise).

Anyway, I guess I’m saying in a roundabout way that this appears to be a bit of an overreach in New York City. Former mayor Michael Bloomberg was possibly the most fanatical anti-smoking, anti-tobacco zealot on the planet — a LOT more than me. New York has some of the strictest anti-smoking ordinances in the country, which for the most part I am completely cool with.

Some people are vowing to fight the New York ban on e-cigs.

Posted in e-cigarettes | Tagged , | 5 Comments

Good news everyone! Cancer death rate drops 20 percent in 20 years; Lung cancer death rate down 34 percent

professor farnsworthI wrote about this several months ago. The cancer death rate in the U.S. has dropped dramatically in the past few years, especially for lung cancer.

Three reasons:

1) Better treatment

2) Better detection

and a big one

3) a drop in the smoking rate

According to this study from the American Cancer Society:

An estimated 1.7 million new cancer cases are projected for 2014, including some 586,000 deaths, according to the new report from the American Cancer Society. And cancer remains the second-most common cause of death in the U.S., behind heart disease.

The good news in those grim figures is that the rate of death from cancer has fallen from about 25 per every 10,000 people in 1991 to about 17 per 10,000 in 2010. That translates into about 1.3 million cancer deaths avoided, including nearly 953,000 men and nearly 388,000 women.

Lung cancer remains the top killer for both sexes, followed by prostate cancer for men and breast cancer for women. But largely because of declines in smoking, the lung cancer death rate dropped by 34 percent in 20 years.

I’ve actually had this argument with some smokers’ rights idiots, claiming “why is lung cancer going up if smoking rates are going down.” Well, I will have to remember this link if I ever run into another one. Lung cancer death rate down 34 percent in 20 years awesome. Lung cancer used to be pretty much a death sentence, less than 20 percent survival rate, but that’s improved dramatically in the last 20 years due to better treatment and better detection.

I also wonder if another factor if a higher percentage of people getting lung cancer are people getting lung cancer NOT caused by smoking. Remember, not all lung cancer is caused by smoking — about 15 percent of the people who get lung cancer never smoked a cigarette in their lives. And smoking is believed to cause a specific kind of lung cancer. There are other forms of lung cancer that don’t appear to be tied to smoking. So that could be a factor, too. Perhaps because of fewer smokers and fewer people getting lung cancer, period, that 15 percent figure has become higher. And these other forms of lung cancer may be more treatable than the cancer caused by smoking. Just a thought. No proof or evidence, just speculation.

Posted in Cancer, Lung cancer, smoking | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

50th Anniversary of Surgeon General’s Report on smoking

mad-men-season-3-poster-11

No more smoking at work or three-martini lunches, 1960s Don Draper

Next week is the 50th anniversary of the groundbreaking U.S. Surgeon General’s report on cigarettes. This report was the result of more than a decade of studies and research into the growing suspicion of a connection between smoking and lung cancer.

A lot of this is documented pretty well in an excellent book called “The Cigarette Century.” The report was fought big time through political channels by the tobacco industry, trying to get it suppressed.

The report issued by Surgeon General Luther Terry came out on Jan. 11, 1964, and along with the 1998 Master Settlement Agreement with the tobacco industry, was a major turning point in the fight against smoking. Now, there was a highly official report, signed off by the U.S. Surgeon General, unequivocally with no subtleties — smoking causes lung cancer. And that cigarette filters did nothing to lower the risk.

cig-vending

Remember these? These used to be EVERYWHERE

Think about that for a moment. No if, ands or butts. There is no doubt. For years, the cigarette industry had been working feverishly to create “doubt” about the science (the same techniques are used by global warming and evolution denialists today — feed the “doubt.”).

It was such a momentous report that it was actually released on a Saturday for fear that it would devastate the stock market.

Think about 1964 … smoking ubiquitous on TV, in movies, in almost every workplace. Ashtrays jammed with cigarettes in hotel lobbies, restaurants, work desks, cars, everywhere. There were no smokefree areas, not in restaurants, not in airplanes, not even in hospitals. The smell was everywhere. Cigarettes sold in vending machines.

My how times have changed since 1964. But, it changed slowly.

A few years after the report, the warnings arrived on packs of cigarettes.

You would have thought this would have been the end of the tobacco industry with two or three years, but no, incredibly, smoking continued to thrive and smoking rates didn’t really start to drop until the 70s, and then didn’t really drop all that dramatically until the 80s, nearly 20 years later.

LutherTerryReport

Surgeon General Luther Terry

Why? The industry fought back. Afterward, the tobacco industry poured more money than ever into its PR machine and its advertising, trying to counteract the influence of the report. Advertising was aimed at women with a series of new cigarettes marketed specifically for women. Then, came Joe Camel, enticing what the industry called “new smokers” (The industry’s euphemism for teen smokers) by making smoking look more cool than ever. And for a time, they were successful.

The smoking rate was about 43 percent in 1964 (and more than 50 percent for men). After the Surgeon General’s report came out, the smoking rate for women and teenagers actually went up for several years, but finally started to drop in the 70s. Around this time, cigarette ads were banned from TV and vending machines disappeared (They were finally banned by the FDA in 2010.). The dramatic drop-off was between 1970 and 1980, with a second, less dramatic drop-off after 2000. From 1990 to 2000, the smoking rate remained stubbornly persistent, dropping only from 25.5 percent to 23.3 percent (the result of a higher teen smoking rate than the 60s and 70s … thanks Joe Camel). Today, the smoking rate is about 19 percent.

What’s more. The attitudes toward smoking changed — dramatically. Smoking is no longer seen by society as “cool” or “hip.” Now, it’s seen as a dirty habit, something to be embarrassed about. Smokes are assigned to the alleys outside bars, in all kinds of weather. It’s no longer “fun” to smoke.

It took about 40 years to cut the smoking rate in half, in other words. Today, it is roughly about 44 percent of what it was in 1964. Just as importantly, but not talked about enough, is the amount of smoking has gone down because very few workplaces allow smoking any longer. There are very few 2- and 3-pack-a-day smokers today, compared to 50 years ago.

Jan. 11, 1964. The date the tide began to turn against the tobacco industry. It was the first major victory against the industry.

Posted in smoking, Surgeon General, tobacco in history, warning labels | Tagged | 1 Comment

21,000 page views in 2013 — Thank you!

Pepe-Le-Pew-pepe-le-pew-756076_294_278

I received by annual report from WordPress a couple of days ago.

 

The Lounge received 21,000 page views in 2013. That’s a humbling number, an average of 57 page views per day. Thank you very much to everyone (Yeah, even you, Blamtucky) who visited and  you can look forward to an active 2014 on the Lounge.

 

Posted in thank you | Tagged | 4 Comments

Awesome anti-smoking ad from Thailand

This is great. Another find on Epoch Times.

An outstanding anti-smoking ad from Thailand. Two little kids walk up to a bunch of smokers holding cigarettes asking for a light. In every case, the adults refuse to give the kids a light and instead give them a lecture about how cigarettes are poisonous and cause emphysema, etc.

The commercial ends with the children handing adults a note, saying, “you worry about me, but not about yourself.”

And cue the adults giving the kids puzzled looks. Powerful stuff. This commercial has been playing worldwide for a few weeks:

 

 

 

Posted in Anti-tobacco campaign, Global smoking, smoking, Thailand | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

China orders government officials to stop smoking in public

China Smoking

Got this interesting article from the Epoch Times, a website by Chinese dissidents about China. It’s become home to a lot of HuffingtonPost refugees who are understandably pissed off about having to use their real names to comment on HP.

I did a quick search on Epoch Times, and they have a ton of articles about smoking. I’m linking to two of them today (well, because I hate college football.). Anyway, the upper echelon of the Communist Party central committee in China has ordered public officials to stop smoking in public. Here’s the new rules:

Officials are not allowed to smoke in schools, hospitals, sports venues, on public transport or any other places where smoking is banned, or to smoke or offer cigarettes when performing official duties, the official Xinhua News said. They also cannot use public funds to buy cigarettes, and within Communist Party or government offices tobacco products cannot be sold nor adverts displayed.

This is likely a major breakthrough. For the first time, very high-level attention and support is being given to anti-tobacco efforts,” said Ray Yip, head of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s China program. The foundation has been working on smoking cessation campaigns in the country.

 China smokes more cigarettes than any nation on the Earth (more than 300 million Chinese smoke in a nation of 1.3 billion), and this might be the first step in a public smoking ban in that country. Don’t look for China to crack down on smoking entirely, since the cigarette industry is a state-run monopoly (U.S. Big Tobacco has tried to make inroads into China, but have been seriously rebuffed — Big Tobacco has since given more of its attention to India and Africa.)

According to Epoch Times:

Smoking, which is linked to an average annual death toll of 1.4 million people in China in recent years, is one of the greatest health threats the country faces, government statistics show. The annual number of cigarettes sold in the country increased by 50 percent to 2.52 trillion in 2012 compared with 10 years earlier, according to the Chinese Association on Tobacco Control, which is overseen by health authorities.

 

So interesting first step to try and curb smoking in China. I’ll peruse Epoch Times from time to time to see what else they offer on the issue.

 

Posted in China, smoking, Smoking bans | Tagged , | 2 Comments